By Todd Hummel
For The Daily Item
LEWISBURG -- In Monday's Heartland Athletic Conference Division I matchup between Lewisburg and Danville -- teams that shared the division title a year ago -- both coaches saw some good things on the field.
However both coaches could also point to reasons why the game ended in a 1-1 tie.
"I thought (Lewisburg) had the better of the first half," Danville coach Brian Dressler said. "The first 15 or 20 minutes of the second half, we really took it to them."
Lewisburg did get the better of play in the first half, notching its lone goal halfway into the opening 40 minutes. Danville got the equalizer by controlling the opening part of the second half. The teams had their chances to get the game-winner, but neither could capitalize.
The Green Dragons (3-0-1) started the first half with an early corner and kept the offensive pressure on the Ironmen through most of the first 40 minutes. The first goal of the game came with 21:18 left in the first half.
The play was started off a corner kick by Calvin Reif. The ball was cleared back to the corner of the field where Reif put it back in the box. Bronson Ferster was able to corral the loose ball and passed it to Nikolas Janesch, who converted to give his team a 1-0 lead.
Danville (1-0-1) struggled in the first half in getting opportunities thanks to poor passing, but after a talk at halftime, the Ironmen improved their play.
The Ironmen generated several scoring chances early in the second half, getting three quick opportunities before converting on the equalizer with 36:22 left in the game. After a corner, there was a scramble in front of the net and Andrew Smith was able to put the ball in the net to tie the game.
"I didn't like our passing in the first half, it was sloppy. Unforced errors were killing us," Dressler said. "I told them at halftime that we had to win the first five minutes of the second half. We had to attack, attack. The kids really brought into what we said."
Lewisburg had a chance to take a 2-1 lead, but Udoka Eze sent a shot went off the crossbar, kind of the story of the Green Dragons' game.
"That's really seemed to me what we were missing," Lewisburg coach Skip Kratzer said. "We had the opportunities. We looked dangerous; we just couldn't find the back of the net."
The Green Dragons also had great chance in the second overtime, but Sam Johansson, the Danville goalie, made an outstanding save to keep the game tied. Eze had an open left side of the net on a scramble in front and put a good head on a ball, but Johansson made a diving attempt and got a hand on the ball.
Lewisburg led in shots (13-9) and corners (6-4). Chris Dempsey had one save for Danville, while Johansson finished with four saves. Logan Cho stopped three shots for Lewisburg.